Cara, Career taster story

Cara tells us how she started with WSCC on a career taster.

Tell us a bit about yourself.

Hi! I’m Cara. I recently completed a career taster in the Talent Attraction Team at West Sussex County Council.

Why did you want to do a career taster/What did you want to achieve?

I recently graduated university and wanted to gain some professional experience. When I graduated, I didn’t have a clear idea of what career I wanted to pursue, so I wanted a role where I would be doing various responsibilities. The opportunity for the career taster came up and it seemed perfect for what I was looking for.

What did you have to do to apply and get the career taster? For example, interview, application process.

An advert for the career taster appeared on Facebook and from there on, it was so simple! The link on the advert took me to the application web page, I filled in the information and uploaded my CV. I then was invited to have an informal conversation about why the career taster appealed to me and to find out more about the role. A few days later, I got a phone call to tell me I got the position! The entire process was very relaxed.

What service was your career taster in, how long was it and what did you do?

I worked with the Talent Attraction Team for 12 weeks. I helped create social media and website content, film and edit videos, and assist with the organisation and running of career events.

I had the opportunity to collaborate with a variety of different departments on a number of projects, such as the Libraries service, Children, Young People and Learning service, and the Occupational Therapy service, to name a few.

What did you learn and achieve?

I learnt so much in quite a short amount of time! I learnt new skills such as video editing, which I had never done before, and I was able to utilise and enhance some of my existing skills. I personally feel that I achieved a newfound confidence in my professional abilities, having received some really beneficial and generous feedback from not only people in the Recruitment team, but the wider WSCC organisation.

Did the career taster meet your expectations, and did you get what you wanted out of it?

I most definitely got what I wanted out of it, and more. I was thrown in the deep end in the best way possible, as I could put what I was learning into practice. I immediately felt like a useful and valued member of the team.

Was there something you particularly enjoyed about your career taster? For example, a moment that sticks out.

I enjoyed being able to travel around the county to meet with people from a wide variety of teams at events or filming sessions and find out more about what the different services do. I also enjoyed being able to use my hobby of photography at work!

How were you supported by West Sussex?

I had regular meetings with my team and they were always available if I needed support or feedback on something I had created. I was given guidance throughout, but was still trusted to work independently too, which I very much appreciated.

What are your plans now your career taster has come to an end?

I am now exploring my career options and, having completed the career taster, I have come to realise that I particularly enjoy the creative side of work. I feel much more confident in applying for jobs now that I have the experience of the career taster.

Would you recommend a career taster to others?

Yes, 100%! Being able to have hands-on experience was the best way for me to develop as someone who had never worked in a professional environment. It has given me a foundation which I can build on, which is amazing as someone who is new to navigating the world of work.

Last updated:
19 January 2024
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